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FAQ: Bottle Water Versus Tap Water


Isn't bottled water safer than tap water?

No. Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) conducted a four-year review of the bottled water industry, and their conclusion is that there is no assurance that just because water comes out of a bottle it is any cleaner or safer than water from the tap. And in fact, an estimated 25 percent or more of bottled water is really just tap water in a bottle!!!  1

Is bottled water actually unsafe? 

Most bottled water appears to be safe. Some brands was spotty, however, and such products may pose a health risk, especially for people with weakened immune systems (elderly, infants, transplant and cancer patients). Chemical contaminants are at levels above strict state health limits in at least one sample tested.

Could the plastic in water bottles pose a health risk?

Studies have shown that chemicals called phthalates (a cancer-causing agent), which are known to disrupt testosterone and other hormones, can leach into bottled water over time. One study found that water that had been stored for 10 weeks in plastic and in glass bottles contained phthalates, suggesting that the chemicals could be coming from the plastic cap or liner.

Other Facts and Statistics:

  • FDA allows a certain level of E. coli and coli contamination in bottled water
  • Inspection Finding: control standards for chemical pollutants and bacteria are lower in bottled water than tap water1
  • 85% of bottled water were not recycled, meaning that 46,000 tons of plastic wastes are produced yearly2



1Natural Resources Defense Council 2The Eco-Dentistry Association

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